State Rep. Steve Carter, R-Baton Rouge, sponsor of House Bill 632, pulled the bill before it went up for debate after he resolved that the measure would not have the votes for passage. Amid opposition, Carter then proposed a lower tax increase.
"I'm not willing to force my colleagues to waste their time on voting on an issue when it will not pass", Carter shared on Facebook Wednesday.
The conservative organization, the main political advocacy group for billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch, launched an aggressive grassroots and advertising campaign lambasting the gas tax and urging lawmakers to reject it.
Carter's bill would have originally increased the state's gas tax by 17 cents per gallon.
Hoping to reach a compromise, he floated the idea of raising it by just 10 cents per gallon, which would have dropped the annual revenue for the state to about $300 million. I'm not going to ask you to vote.
The tax increase couldn't overcome the anti-tax sentiment of the majority-GOP chamber, combined with opposition from the state Republican Party and organizations working to defeat the bill.
Source WAFB Source WAFB
"It's shame that we're controlled by people that live outside our state, that have probably never traveled our roads to experience our problems", said Carter.
Twenty of those states have Republican governors, he said, and 98 percent of the legislators who voted for higher gasoline taxes won their next primary elections.
Other bills that were shelved today, the two bills to protect federal monuments in the state.
The major cause for ex-convicts returning to prison is an inability to support themselves financially, according to the group of lawmakers, law enforcement, and judicial officials who developed the package over the course of more than a year.
Lawmakers applauded when Carter said the department is doing great work.
"The poor condition of our roads and infrastructures affects", DOTD Secretary Shawn Wilson said. But please put this on your agenda for the future.